How to Properly Fit a Wider Track Wheel Setup on a Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 for Improved Stability?

When you think of performance cars, the Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 inevitably comes to mind. This powerful beast, known for its impressive engine and exhilarating track performance, is a favorite among car enthusiasts. However, as with all things, there’s always room for improvement. One common modification Mustang owners consider is fitting a wider track wheel setup to enhance stability and grip, especially when cornering.

Before you rush to the garage, however, it’s essential to understand the intricacies involved in this modification. Fitting wider wheels on your Mustang isn’t as straightforward as it might seem. This guide will help you navigate the process, ensuring you enhance your Mustang’s performance while preserving its iconic style.

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Understanding The Need for Wider Wheels

The first step in your modification journey is to understand why a wider wheel setup is beneficial. Wider wheels can significantly improve your car’s performance on the track by providing a larger contact patch with the road. This increased contact results in better grip and improved stability, particularly during high-speed cornering.

However, wider wheels aren’t just about performance. They can also give your Mustang a more aggressive, muscular look. This is fitting for a car with the pedigree of the Shelby GT350 and can help your vehicle stand out on the street.

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Choosing the Right Wheel and Tire Size

It’s essential to choose the right wheel and tire size when switching to a wider setup. Typically, the Shelby GT350 comes with a stock wheel size of 19×10.5 inches in the front and 19×11 inches in the rear. These wheels are wrapped in 295/35ZR19 and 305/35ZR19 tires, respectively.

To improve stability, you will want to consider a wheel width of at least 11 inches for the front and 12 inches for the rear. This increase in width will allow you to fit wider tires, typically in the range of 315/30ZR19 to 335/30ZR19, depending on your exact wheel size.

Remember, the right wheel and tire size is a balancing act. You will want to increase the width as much as possible for increased performance, but without causing rubbing issues or negatively affecting the car’s handling. Consult a professional if you’re unsure.

Adjusting the Suspension for Wider Wheels

Adjusting the suspension is a crucial step when fitting wider wheels. Larger and wider wheels can significantly affect your Mustang’s handling and performance, as they change the car’s dynamic weight distribution. Thus, you need to consider suspension modifications to accommodate the new setup.

Companies like Vorshlag offer track-focused suspension packages specifically designed for the Mustang Shelby GT350. These kits are designed to improve handling and stability, providing an excellent option when fitting wider wheels.

Considering Wheel Offset and Backspacing

Wheel offset and backspacing are two critical measurements that you need to consider when fitting wider wheels. The offset is the distance between the wheel’s centerline and the mounting surface, while backspacing refers to the distance from the wheel’s mounting surface to the back edge.

When moving to a wider wheel setup, you’ll likely need an offset that is more positive. This modification will ensure that the wheel sits correctly within the wheel well, reducing the risk of rubbing on either the bodywork or suspension components.

Final Steps and Precautions

Once you’ve selected your wheels, tires, and suspension modifications, it’s finally time to fit everything together. This process should be handled by a professional to ensure the safe and correct installation of all components.

Finally, once the new setup is installed, test it thoroughly in a controlled environment, like a track, before hitting public roads. Monitor the car’s handling closely to ensure that there are no unexpected issues and that performance has improved as intended.

Remember that fitting wider wheels to your Mustang Shelby GT350 will be a substantial modification to your car. As such, it may have implications on your vehicle’s warranty and insurance, and it’s important to be aware of these changes before proceeding.

With all this in mind, fitting a wider wheel setup on your Mustang Shelby GT350 can drastically improve both its track performance and street presence. Take your time, do your research, and ensure everything is installed correctly, and you’ll be well on your way to enjoying an even more exhilarating Mustang experience.

Achieving Balance with a Wider Wheel Setup

When it comes to the Shelby Mustang, balance is paramount. The beauty of this car is its perfect blend of power, speed and control. Installing a wider wheel setup should enhance these attributes, not detract from them. Thus, understanding the impact of your modifications is essential.

A wider wheel setup can alter your Mustang’s balance in the form of dynamic weight distribution. With larger wheels, the weight distribution of the car shifts to the outer edges, making it more stable at high speeds and while cornering. However, this can also make the car’s steering heavier and potentially more difficult to control in certain situations.

Another factor you will need to consider while fitting wider wheels is wheel studs. If you’re widening the wheel setup, the original studs might not be long enough to secure the new wheels safely. Therefore, you might need to install longer wheel studs for added safety. Companies like Ford Performance offer high-quality wheel studs that are suitable for wider wheels.

In addition to the performance aspect, let’s not forget the impact on your Mustang’s appearance. Wider wheels can give your car a more aggressive stance, enhancing its aesthetic appeal. However, it’s important to ensure the wheels don’t protrude excessively from the vehicle’s bodywork, as this can lead to legal issues in some states in the United States.

Conclusion: The Wider the Better?

Fitting a wider wheel setup on your Mustang Shelby GT350 is an exciting modification that can significantly enhance your car’s track performance and visual appeal. However, it needs to be done carefully and thoughtfully. From choosing the right wheel and tire size to adjusting the suspension and considering wheel offset, there is a lot to think about.

Remember to consult professionals throughout the process, from purchasing the right wheels and tires to adjusting the suspension. You should also be aware of the potential legal and insurance implications, especially if the modifications are extensive.

Before hitting the open road, remember to test your car’s handling in a controlled environment like a track. Keep a close eye on the car’s handling and performance to ensure that the modification has enhanced your Mustang’s capabilities rather than detracting from them.

After all, the goal here isn’t to simply make your Mustang look cool. It’s to improve your ride’s stability, grip, and overall performance, while also maintaining the iconic style that makes the Mustang Shelby GT350 a favorite among car enthusiasts. With the right wider wheel setup, your Mustang can truly become an even more thrilling ride.